Sunday 11 August 2013

Pooch alert!

Warning: you may want to kill me by the end of this post. 

But look at that face! How could anyone resist? We spent a glorious few days looking after this little pooch down in South Wales. 

She's only tiny: her against a pigeon would be a fair fight, but she knows what she wants. And what she wants is to play with you, and to snuggle up to you. 
Asking to come up on the sofa. The bluest hydrangeas
Rhossili bay. Winston Churchill impression
Still asking to get up on the sofa. Mint ice cream.
The lesser spotted man of the house. Pooch has had enough of walking.

Holed up in the old man tree waiting for the thunder and rain to pass

Monday 5 August 2013

A city of two tales

A chance invitation to house-sit this last week, meant I was in town for the latest bloggy get together yesterday. Which town you say?
It's Cardiff, capital of Welsh Wales!

The first tale is of a get together with some lovely bloggers: Vix, Dee and Em. What a stunning group of women!

I have met Vix before; the friendliest blogger in the known universe, but sweet gentle Dee with her gorgeous red hair and big eyes, and beautiful Em with her lovely manner and gracious hostess skills are new to me. A few hours in, fuelled by killer strength mojitos, we were laughing like navvies.

Here's the way it goes: various bloggers turn up dressed to kill. First task is to find a reviving coffee after the journey. Then there's some serious shopping interspersed with sightseeing. Next comes lunch, always in Wetherspoons, usually washed down by jugfuls of cocktails, often involving social intercourse with pensioners. That takes a while and involves photographs. After that it all goes a bit woozy until we suddenly realise our train is due. At some point we open gifts!

It's a patented formula, and very successful it is too. Any bloggers wishing to establish a franchise are very welcome. Your only obligation is to have fun!
A book set in Africa and 1960s pattern from Vix and a couple of funky brooches from Em. 

Wetherspoons, where the smiles get wider! :D

Miss Taunton, Miss Winchester and Miss Walsall. No competition, they were the best in show.

Vix just managed to save herself from a slovenly hair moment there. If there is one thing that we learned in Cardiff it is that 'slovenly hair can ruin all your chances'.

I advise you to take heed.
There's a lot to see in Cardiff. There's a giant panda roaming on some cafe tables, fine architecture which would not be out of place in Venice, a tribute to the late great Aneurin Bevan, founder of the NHS and a castle. Which is where the second tale begins.

The traditional owner and resident of the castle on the right here, was the Marquess of Bute.

A resident on the street on the left, St Mary Street, was my four times great grandfather, the imaginatively named Mark Marks. Marks and the Marquess of Bute were well known to one another, and in 1841 the Marquess presented a plot of land to him.

In the 1861 census, my relative can be found residing at 34 St Mary Street, which is today the Cardiff Oxfam Boutique. WHICH WE VISITED!!! I didn't know at the time that this was great great great great grandpappy's residence or I would have been squeaking in excitement, just as I am now.

Have you ever done any family history? I recommend it, it can be quite amazing what you discover. It can lend general history a fascinating new perspective. If you have, have you found out anything interesting? Any characters in your clan?